'Spider-Man 3' Star Thomas Haden Church Defends Topher Grace's Venom

Though actor Thomas Haden Church has mysterious role in an upcoming superhero movie to look forward to, the actor took some time to look back at his first time as a super villain.

Fans gave Spider-Man 3 a drubbing when it released in theaters over a decade ago, but it wasn't Church's portrayal as Flint Marko, AKA the Sandman, that riled them up. Topher Grace as Venom was the culprit, but Church defended his co-star in a recent interview with JoBlo.

"The studio felt like they had me, they had Franco’s story continuing, and they were like, we need one more that’s more of a millennial," Church revealed. "And that’s how Venom and Topher Grace came into the picture. And by the way, I thought Topher was great in the movie and Venom is a pretty scary animal. And that was the evolution of that."

Church was excited about the project ever since those initial meetings with director Sam Raimi, even though he didn't know much about the character he was going to play. But after doing the research, he became a fan.

"I was thrilled, man. I’m a big admirer of Sam Raimi’s, I love Tobey [Maguire] as an actor and it was right on the heels of getting so much attention for Sideways and then these people step up and offer me the villain in the next Spider-Man," Church said." And, I just liked everybody involved, I liked the script. Again, I didn’t know how it was going to change, but c’mon, I would’ve done the movie anyway. I liked the character a lot."

Despite the fan reaction and the poor critical reception, Spider-Man 3 made a ton of money at the box office. And even after watching the finished product, Church was still a fan.

After 11 years, Sony is betting that the taste of Topher has been washed from fans palates as they gear up for the release of the long-planned Venom movie. This project is said to be an edgier take on the genre, more in line with Fox's R-rated X-Men movies, with Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer helming the project.


Fans got their first look at the teaser for the film last week, with Tom Hardy playing the role of Eddie Brock in the film. It remains to be seen if Sony will be able to make fans forget the Venom of Spider-Man 3 with this new take.

Venom premieres in theaters on October 5th.